The Rotary Club of the Abingtons is planning a two-day bicycle event featuring family fun for a good cause.
The bike ride will start at 9:30 a.m. Saturday, April 30 at Sickler’s Bike Shop, 298 Noble Road, South Abington Township, and ride on the Trolley Trail through Glenburn and Dalton and back to Sickler’s. The pace will be child-friendly with police escort on the major roadways. No child will be left behind. Ride leaders and sweepers will insure safety for all. Bikers must wear helmets. Cost for a family of four to ride is $25.
The seven-mile ride on the newly-created Trolley Trail shows our community’s best. This Trolley Trail was opened last year through the efforts of the Countryside Conservancy. The trail cuts through the hillside running parallel to Routes 6 and 11 from Clarks Summit to Dalton on a paved, fully accessible roadbed.
For the more serious bike rider, a 30-mile ride is planned at a cost of $35 per rider. The event will also begin at Sickler’s on April 30 and travel on a planned route. Road bikes and helmets are required. The ride will regroup at intersections so no one is left behind. To register for this bike event in either category, visit bit.ly/1UE923O.
On both days of the event, April 30 and May 1, Rotarians will be collecting bikes or parts of bikes and used sewing machines for donation to a world-wide organization called “Pedals for Progress” or “P4p.”
Each year Americans buy 18 million new bicycles and discard millions of old ones. The old bikes are often left in garages or basements for years. Most of these end up in landfills. Pedals for Progress accepts old bikes and sends them to people from developing countries to be used for transportation to jobs or to markets for family needs.
Old sewing machines, once the staple for home clothes making in our areas, can also be put to good use. A forgotten sewing machine may be resting in your attic or spare room. Give it away so that someone who needs to support a family can put that machine to work once again. Rotarians will also be accepting monetary donations of $10, to help with the cost of getting the old bike or sewing machine to the new place.
Pedals for Progress has received, processed and donated more than 146,00 bicycles, 3,200 used sewing machines, and $10.8 million in new spare parts to partner charities in 38 developing countries. This world-wide organization isn’t just donating used bicycles and sewing machines, it is also helping developing world economies by promoting self-sustaining businesses.
In 2013 and 2014, P4p shipped its first two pallets of sewing machines to Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania. In November 2015, the following update came from Jonathan Mulokozi, of Community Support Mission, our partner there in Tanzania:
Here is our work report.
We sold 35 sewing machines, each for 100,000 Tanzania shillings (about $46 U.S.). These sales cover our shipping and port charges, so we can use the rest of the machines to make a profit. We sold 10 of the other machines to a member of Parliament in the Mbeya region, where she distributed the machines to other women. We use other machines in the three new sewing and training centers we opened in Karagwe. We employ 3 technicians to teach tailoring, and we have 6 students. Our main customers are primary schools and secondary schools. From the sale of clothes we make, we made 2,100,000 Tanzania shillings (about $1000 U.S.).
With income from the sewing centers plus other donations we bought a corn milling machine. With this machine we make Grade A Super Maize Flour.
Because we did not have a proper power source for the milling machine, we completed a separate project to supply it with electricity. The electricity project involved running new power lines to our machine from the main power line from Uganda to Tanzania. With the new power, ten local families have electricity for the first time.
We hope that you will be able to send more sewing machines by early 2016, and that we will have enough funds to get more bicycles and sewing machines after that.
Mr. Jonathan Mulokozi
CSM Tanzania, East Africa
On April 30 old bicycles will be collected at Sickler’s Bike Shop and on Sunday, May 1, at the South Abington Park on Northern Boulevard, in Chinchilla. Look around your garage or in your back shed. If you see an old bike or parts of what once was a bike, bring it to these locations and give it a new life for someone else to use. Check out your attic for an old sewing machine and send it to someone in a land far away for new life.
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